Waking Up in Medellin
By Kathryn Lane
Why this book?
The tropical atmosphere of contemporary Medellin, Colombia is the setting for the first book in the Nikki Garcia corporate espionage thriller series. Still reeling from her young son’s tragic death, savvy international auditor Nikki Garcia accepts an assignment to investigate fraud allegations at the Colombian affiliate of a multinational corporation. I loved Nikki’s sharp-edged inner voice and canny observations.
The impeccable cultural details really caught my attention. For example, right in the first scene, Nikki watches a wealthy businessman light a cigar. From the Churchill brand to the way he lights it with a strip of cedarwood to the way he makes her wait, not only could I see the scene in my mind’s eye, but I could smell the tang of burning wood and tobacco and resent his snobby attitude. So. Well. Done.
Infamous drug kingpin Pablo Escobar is long gone from Medellin, but his dangerous legacy is not forgotten. As the plot unfolds, Nikki heads into a maze riddled with dark money, high stakes corruption, and concealed motives, as well as a possible love interest. When she is kidnapped, the odds of survival are not in her favor.
I met author Kathryn Lane, who is originally from Mexico, at a writer’s conference where we discovered a mutual love of writing strong female protagonists and all things Mexico. I’m not the only fan of her books: Waking Up in Medellin won 2017’s Best Fiction Book of the Year from the Killer Nashville International Mystery Writers' Conference.
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